public spending

Government’s plan to transform the Post Office network must be partnered with improvements in service standards if it is to succeed

During the most recent Post Office closures, 2.7 million people had their say on the service that is vital to them. Andy Burrows argues that a new radical plan to make the post office network more sustainable will only work if significant improvements in service standards, consistency and reliability are pushed through simultaneously. Twenty million consumers still use post offices every […]

Pressure is mounting on single parents to find work and move off benefits – but the government’s reforms will do very little to help

Rigid adherence to the conditions of jobseeker’s allowance inhibits, rather than enables, a single parent’s ability to find better paid employment, writes Phillippa Newis. Government would do better to be patient with single parents who wish to complete further education courses instead of forcing them to rely on unsustainable, poorly paid employment. One of the first provisions of the government’s […]

The extent to which police programmes are accountable to national oversight bodies in an age of localism should be clarified for local leaders who have responded positively to the changes in policing

The transformation of policing is real and is gathering momentum. Nick Gargan argues that police chiefs have welcomed and risen to the new localism agenda but central bodies are still administering direct oversight of programmes making it unclear where ultimate accountability lies. The recent Select Committee session on mobile technologies in policing foreshadows a possible local and national tug-of-war. Is […]

The services provided by public libraries are irreplaceable, but the network needs to be modernised

Library services need to modernise and move into the 21st century. Miranda McKearney argues that we should look past the global statistics on falling library use and conduct careful strategic planning to create a library service that can adapt to the future whilst continuing to provide socially engaging services with proven impact.   At The Reading Agency, we’re passionate about […]

Osborne should make cuts from low-growth areas, and recycle the money into high-impact spending to boost the economy while sticking to the deficit reduction plan

Ian Mulheirn discusses the Social Market Foundation’s plan to boost growth while sticking to the deficit cutting plan.  So now it seems everyone is calling for a fiscal growth strategy. Conservative backbenchers are pushing tax breaks for entrepreneurs; Ed Balls wants a reversal of last year’s VAT cut; and the Lib Dems are agitating for the acceleration of the £10,000 personal […]

Road safety is at risk if we ignore targets and the lack of funding in some local authorities

The downward trend in road deaths seen in recent years should not be taken for granted. Neil Greig argues that road safety is at risk if we ignore the efficacy of targets and the lack of funding in some local authorities. The Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) recently gave evidence to Louise Ellman’s House of Commons Transport Select Committee Inquiry […]

Getting Whitehall to incorporate new IT developments in public services remains an uphill struggle. The government now lags ten years behind the private sector in its use of social media and lack of feedback to users

In a scathing indictment of ‘Rip off’ IT contracts in government the Public Administration Select Committee called for sweeping changes in government-contractor relations.  Jane Tinkler finds that the Committee’s follow-up report comments insightfully on the coalition government’s response document, but also stresses new themes. In particular, PASC is now highlighting the across-the-board absence of social media in central government websites and […]

After previously making good progress, the Department for International Development now faces an uphill battle reaching our foreign aid target

At the close of 2011, British Politics and Policy at LSE asked our contributors for their thoughts and predictions for 2012. Avery Hancock looks ahead at the challenges now facing the Department for International Development, and its Secretary of State, Andrew Mitchell, to get our 0.7% of GDP target for foreign aid spending into legislation during this parliament. The coalition government’s […]